Illinois News

Friday, August 23, 2019

Champaign-Urbana firefighters face another battle even after the fire is out

Fire departments are taking more precautions after studies have shown the fight to put out a fire can later become a fight to stay alive. Recently, the Champaign-Urbana community has rallied behind a local firefighter battling cancer. Sadly, it's a story we hear too often. Even though he preferred not to talk about it, the data linking firefighters and cancer speaks for itself. Firefighters face a 9% higher risk of being diagnosed with cancer and a 14% higher risk of cancer-related deaths, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). “There is absolutely no question that firefighting is a more dangerous profession today than it was 50 years ago,” said Royal Mortenson, director of the Illinois Fire Service Institute.
WRSP/WCCU-TV My Fox Illinois

Sycamore bystander saw fire, alerted sleeping homeowner before calling 911

PHOTO: Fire crews responded about 5 p.m. Thursday to the reports of a structure fire coming from a single-story home in the 1000 block of Townsend Street. Sycamore police on the scene said no injuries were reported. The Sycamore Fire Department said in a news release that the fire appeared to be accidental and that it caused about $25,000 in damage.
DeKalb Daily Chronicle

Body of woman, 65, found in Lake Carroll house fire

An autopsy is set for today in the death of a 65-year-old woman whose home was destroyed by a fire around 7:30 Thursday morning. The body of Christine Sucholl was found in an upstairs hallway at 3-476 Fawn Ridge Drive, Lanark Fire Chief Randy Witt and Carroll County Coroner Matt Jones said. Sucholl was the only person home at the time; her husband, Richard, was at work. The cause is under investigation by the state fire marshal’s office, but it is believed to have started in a craft room on the first floor, Witt said. “It looks as if the fire may have made it hard to exit the stairway,” Jones said. Firefighters were on scene until 1 p.m. A dog and a cat also were killed.

Fire damages east side Kankakee home

Kankakee firefighters were called to a house fire in the 2700 block of Cranbrook Street on Kankakee's east side on Wednesday. According to Kankakee Fire Chief Damon Schuldt, they were dispatched at approximately 10 p.m. No one was at home at the time of the fire. No injuries were reported. Damage was estimated at $10,000. The cause is undetermined at this time.
Kankakee Daily Journal

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Havana’s Bill Watts concludes 60-year firefighting career

Once Bill Watts acquired the firefighting itch, he spent 60 years scratching it. Fortunately for residents of Havana and the surrounding area, Watts never used calamine lotion. The 84-year-old Watts retired recently from the Havana Rural Fire Protection District, where he had volunteered the past 38 years. For 22 years before that, Watts served with the Havana fire department, which provides protection for that Mason County city of about 3,000. Watts became chief of both departments, although in recent years he limited his duties to handling paperwork for the rural district. “Sixty years is a long time,” the understated Watts said. Longevity statistics for volunteer firefighters nationally aren’t easy to find, if they exist at all.
Springfield State Journal-Register - Metered Site

Coast Guard Rescues Fishing Boat Taking On Water Near Winthrop Harbor

VIDEO: After taking on water in choppy conditions, a boat had to be guided back to shore by the Coast Guard early Thursday morning in Winthrop Harbor. Winthrop Harbor Fire Chief Justin Stried said around 3:30 a.m. authorities received a call about a private boat taking on water about one mile east of Northpoint Marina. The vessel was not able to make it back to shore, so the Winthrop Harbor Fire Department’s emergency rescue boat and two divers went out to make a rescue. However, they started taking on water themselves about 25 to 50 yards outside the marina breakwall, so they called for help from the U.S. Coast Guard. A Coast Guard rescue boat out of Kenosha later arrived to assist the boat in distress and tow the 24-foot sailing boat back to the marina. The passengers were not injured.
CBS Chicago

Osco-Andover Fire celebrates 75th Anniversary

PHOTO: Osco-Andover firefighters and their families as well as retired members and families celebrated the 75th anniversary of the Fire Department at a dinner in the Andover Fire Station. Firefighters and children received an anniversary T-shirt commemorating the event. Chief Roger Stancliff presented a program tracing the history of the department and how fire fighting and equipment has changed through the years. “Utilization of grant programs to acquire equipment along with fundraisers, and very generous donations form people in the community have been very beneficial in helping the department purchase needed equipment,” Stancliff said. He traced the history of the department and said the first station was built in 1947-1948 in Osco, with an addition to the station in 1983 that provided a pass-through joining the two stations. In 1950, a station was acquired in Andover and in 2001, that building was razed and a new station constructed.
Cambridge Chronicle

Coffeen Fire Department To Fill Boots

Coffeen's volunteer firefighters, join firefighters across the country, to ask the citizens in their community to make a donation to the Muscular Dystrophy Association on Saturday, Aug. 31. The local fire department will conduct their Fill the Boot campaign from 6 a.m. to noon, in front of Casey's General Store in Coffeen. The Muscular Dystrophy Association and the International Association of Firefighters have been working together for more than 60 years to help individuals living with muscular dystrophy and other debilitating diseases. The donations collected help fund research, MDA Care Centers, provide early diagnosis, fund equipment assistance and access to clinical trials and trained specialists. Fill the Boot donations also provide funding for summer camps for kids, support groups, advocacy and public policy efforts.
The Journal-News

Woodstock Fire/Rescue District plan prepared

With a more focused mission statement and a new four-year strategic plan, the Woodstock Fire/Rescue District is looking to improve as a professional department. “We’re not satisfied with the status quo,” said Capt. Karen Bush, who led the effort to create the 32-page plan. “We want to get better.” That plan will be presented this week during a meeting of the WFRD Board of Trustees, which is expected to approve it. The meeting will begin at 7 p.m. Thursday at Station 3, 2900 Raffel Road. “This is not just a wish list,” Chief Mike Hill said. “There are concrete steps for achieving our goals.” The plan includes six specific goals, which Hill did not want to release until the plan had been approved by the board. But he and Bush said those goals included specifics in such areas as staffing, equipment, fiscal responsibility, response times, health and wellness, and training.
Woodstock Independent

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